McCormick releases first red-cap SKU in nearly five years with Crushed Jalapeño Pepper

By Ryan Daily

- Last updated on GMT

Image Credit: McCormick
Image Credit: McCormick

Related tags Mccormick spices and herbs

McCormick is expanding its red-cap line of spices and herbs with the release of Crushed Jalapeño Pepper next month, as the company capitalizes on a recent rebrand, Giovanna DiLegge, the company’s VP of marketing, North America consumer, told FoodNavigator-USA.

The Crushed Jalapeño Pepper is the first new product under McCormick’s iconic red-capped line of spices and seasoning in nearly five years. The product features dried jalapeño seeds that can be used as a convenient substitute to fresh jalapeño, which does not require cutting and preparing, or as a standalone topping for various dishes, DiLegge explained. 

The product costs $3.64 MSRP and will roll out nationwide in retailers like Kroger, Walmart, HEB, Meijer, and other stores and online at McCormick’s website, Amazon, and Instacart.

“Guacamole is a great example. You can mix that into your guacamole [or] anything where you are adding something wet. ... It will rehydrate those dry jalapenos and make them have that flavor profile and texture of fresh.”

McCormick is promoting the release with a full marketing plan, including recipes and content on sites, Google search ads, social media promotions, and in-store displays, DiLegge explained.  

“People are familiar with jalapenos, so it is now making them familiar with the fact that we have a convenient offering for jalapenos,” she added.  

Expanding access to spicy and bold flavors 

McCormick bolstered its spicy flavor business in recent years through acquisitions – including Cholula and Frank's RedHot​ – and releasing new products to meet consumer demands for bold tastes.  

In March 2024, McCormick launched Frank's RedHot Dip'n Sauce and Frank's RedHot Squeeze Sauce, a line of squeezable condiments. Then, last year, McCormick expanded Cholula beyond the sauce category​ for the first time with a salsa line, available in Smoky Chipotle, Original, and Salsa Verde. 

“If you look across all the products that we are introducing and bringing to market across the categories we play in — so whether that be on our blend side of our spice business where we have blended seasoning blends or our condiments — we are going to have a lot of spicy flavors. Almost every single innovation platform will have a spicy flavor in the lineup.” 

She added, “Heat will be an important part of a long-term plan. This Crushed Jalapeno, I will say is the first of many that we have planned to come out over the next few years.”  

Red cap refresh is the ‘first step in modernizing this brand’  

McCormick is capitalizing on a rebrand, as the company explores opportunities to tap into the need for seasonal spices and blends, DiLegge said. 

Last year, McCormick rolled out a redesign of its red-cap business​, including a new transparent bottle, a snap-tight lid to seal in aroma and freshness, and a best-buy date and name of the flavor on the top of the lid. 

“[The rebrand] is the first step in modernizing this brand. We are a legacy brand. We have a lot of heritage, but also we have been trying to preserve that heritage for a long time, which has meant we have not really taken steps to modernize it.” 

After nearly a year, the redesign “has finally flown through across all of [McCormick’s] products,” and the response has “been nothing but positive,” DiLegge said. While many brands struggle with maintaining the same level of sales post-rebrand, McCormick witnessed an “uptick in sales” in its red-cap products.

Additionally, McCormick is exploring how to grow its seasonal product assortment and tapping into specific seasonal flavors, she added. 

“We have pumpkin pie spice and apple pie spice and all of that, but we have not really done much of that in many years, so that will be upcoming for the back half [of the year]. You will see some more work from us from a seasonal flavor standpoint.” 

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